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guimhj
topic
04:29:10 PM Apr 5th 2013
Besides everything said in these other topics, Power Man and Iron Fist are also not this trope. They are best friends, but both share the spot of main character, have full character development prior and during their shared series and during it. Also, I think Jim Rhodes has at least grown out of it, if him having a pilot training isn't enough.
ScarletSpecter
topic
10:14:41 AM Feb 18th 2013
edited by ScarletSpecter
I have to agree with Pinkdalek. A lot of the examples listed are actually quite offensive. There's that unspoken implication that ethnicity is a black character's only real defining identity. While white characters are free to be their own people, black characters are rarely allowed to be anything more than their skin color or racial stereotypes. Because, much like femaleness, blackness is a notable trait in and of itself in that it negates any further effort to construct a complex, rounded character. Writers should just get a pat on the back for including a minority at all.

By listing these examples thinking any character is this trope by virtue of being black, it's further discriminating against a group who've had this exact same mentality used to exclude and derail them. So even if he's a character who's well-rounded and carries his own personal story arc, he still can't be a character, but a black character.
pinkdalek
topic
03:00:01 PM Aug 16th 2012
Yeah, this is about forced diversity. It seems to cover two main kinds of this:

1) Cases where the character is exclusively there to show the protagonist is totally non-racist and give added inclusivity, and is very shallow with no life outside of their friendship with the protagonist - they also act either like a stereotype of a black person or a parody of one of those stereotypes. Basically, they are black and someone else's best friend and defined entirely by this.

2) Cases where white characters intentionally befriend black people in universe in order to look non-racist and hip. In this case, the black character can have a little or a lot more depth to them, since the show will probably point out how wrong this attitude is.

Characters who are just black and someone's best friend do not count. Jacob Taylor is not an example, as he has a personality of his own and a life outside of Shephard. Eminem and Proof's friendship certainly does not qualify as this, since Proof was a real person - real people can only be this trope under type 2) due to humans having their own personalities as standard, and Eminem genuinely loved Proof, so it's really kind of insulting to list Proof under this trope.
Larkmarn
08:34:50 PM Feb 18th 2013
This is just like what happened with Asian Gal with White Guy. The name was so generic that people began listing every example, leading to massive trope decay when the trope itself was supposed to be about the Unfortunate Implications.

Yet at this point, the trope explicitly mentions relations where "race is incidental" thus... defeating the purpose of the trope.
rimpala
08:41:04 PM Mar 5th 2014
Eminem and Proof are real people and wouldn't fit the Trope. Think about it, you wouldn't want to be called the "Black Best Friend" like there is nothing else to you.
butterflygrrl
topic
06:58:31 AM Apr 24th 2011
should close true interracial friendships actually be on the same page as a trope about shallow, potentially-dubious friendships for the purpose of seeming hip? for the moment, I've cut these from the Real Life examples:

  • Eminem and Proof were very close friends since childhood. Proof's murder in 2006 was a huge factor in Eminem's Creator Breakdown, and Em dedicated a couple songs to his fallen friend.
  • A very touching real life example is the friendship between Chicago Bears teammates Gale Sayers and Brian Piccolo. When Sayers was injured, Piccolo helped him with his reabilitation. Not long after Sayers rejoined the team, Piccolo developed lung cancer. Sayers stood by his friend. Sadly, Brian Piccolo passed away from the disease. It inspired the film Brian's Song with James Caan and Billy Dee Williams.
kraas
topic
10:52:46 AM Aug 4th 2010

Is Jacob Taylor really an example? I thought the point of Black Best Friend is that the character doesn't get any development beyond "the main character's black best friend". Jacob does get actual development, as much as the other characters in Mass Effect 2.
rimpala
08:42:27 PM Mar 5th 2014
How much does this trope even apply to characters that you can edit in game? I like to play an Asian Shepherd myself.
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